Hawks beat Taipans - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hawks beat Taipans

06/11/2004 06:17:36 AM Comments (0)

The Wollongong Hawks boiled with anger for four quarters but maintained their composure long enough to chalk up a comfortable 99-84 victory over Cairns at the Sandpit on Friday night.

The Hawks waged a bitter running battle with the referees all night that threatened to blow over on more than one occasion.

After racing to an 11-point lead after just five minutes, Wollongong saw Cairns claw their way back from the free throw line as the home team's foul count shot up alarmingly.

The Taipans enjoyed a 9-4 advantage in fouls and the 11 points they got from the charity stripe kept them in touch at quarter time 32-24.

The Hawks came out fired up in the second quarter, with their defence continuing a drought for Cairns that had started before the break and lasted seven and a half minutes, leaving the Taipans without a basket from the field during the entire time.

The 18-point lead it produced was cut to just nine at halftime, but the events of the last few seconds of the half only added to Wollongong's overwhelming sense of injustice.

With the players headed off the court the referees put 0.5 seconds back on the clock, and then allowed Melvin Thomas' controversial basket, infuriating Wollongong but they sought out both the referees and their adjudicator during the break.

Leading 53-44, the third quarter was an arm wrestle for both, with Wollongong leading 71-58 with a quarter to play, but that was about to belong entirely to Matt Campbell.

Held largely in check in the first three, Campbell exploded in the last, single handedly shutting Cairns out of the game after they had scored the opening seven points.

With the margin back to six, Campbell hit eight straight Wollongong points, including two killer three-pointers, but ballooned the margin out to 13.

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